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A combination of producers of any product joined together to control its production, sale, and price, so as to obtain a Monopoly and restrict competition in any particular industry or commodity. Cartels exist primarily in Europe, being illegal in the United States under antitrust laws. Also, an association by agreement of companies or sections of companies having common interests, designed to prevent extreme or Unfair Competition and allocate markets, and to promote the interchange of knowledge resulting from scientific and technical research, exchange of patent rights, and standardization of products.

In war, an agreement between two hostile powers for the delivery of prisoners or deserters, or authorizing certain nonhostile intercourse between each other that would otherwise be prevented by the state of war, for example, agreements between enemies for intercommunication by post, telegraph, telephone, or railway.

Although illegal in the United States, foreign cartels influence prices within the United States on imported and smuggled goods that they control. The United States has sued the De Beers diamond cartel several times, and works to stop the flow of illegal narcotics, whose production and distribution are largely controlled by drug cartels.


n. 1) an arrangement among supposedly independent corporations or national monopolies in the same industrial or resource development field organized to control distribution, to set prices, to reduce competition, and sometimes to share technical expertise. Often the participants are multi-national corporations which operate across numerous borders and have little or no loyalty to any home country, and great loyalty to profits. The most prominent cartel is OPEC (Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries), which represents all of the oil producing countries in the Middle East, North Africa and Venezuela. Many cartels operate behind a veil of secrecy, particularly since under American anti-trust laws (the Sherman and Clayton Acts) they are illegal. 2) criminal syndicates like the international drug cartel headquartered in Colombia. (See: antitrust laws)


noun accord, accordance, affiliation, alliance, amalgamation, association, bloc, body corrorate, coadjuvancy, coalition, colleagueship, combination, combine, common consent, community of interest, concert, concord, concordance, concordat, concurrence, confederation, conjunction, consenus, consociation, consonancy, consort, consortium, contract, cooperation, covenant, federation, fusion, group, joint concern, league, merger, mutual understanding, organization, pact, sodality, syndicate, trust, union, unity
Associated concepts: business cartel, international cartel
See also: business, coalition, compact, confederacy, consortium, league, pool, syndicate, treaty, trust



CARTEL,war. An agreement between two belligerent powers for the delivery of prisoners or deserters, and also a written challenge to a duel.
     2. Cartel ship, is a ship commissioned in time of war, to exchange prisoners, or to carry any proposals between hostile powers; she must carry no cargo, ammunitions, or implements of war, except a single gun for signals. The conduct of ships of this description cannot be too narrowly watched. The service on which they are sent is so highly important to the interests of humanity, that it is peculiarly incumbent on all parties to take care that it should be conducted in such a manner as not to become a subject of jealousy and distrust between the two nations. 4 Rob. R. 357. Vide Merl. Rep. b. t.; Dane's Ab. c. 40, a. 6, 7; Pet. C. C. R. 106; 3 C. Rob. 141 C. Rob. 336; 1 Dods. R. 60.

References in periodicals archive ?
The Mexican drug cartels are more sophisticated and wealthier than the jihadists, already have a presence in 230 American cities, and have carried out executions inside the United States," Winslow stressed.
Furthermore, a large share of the 163 companies identified by OFAC in these three states have connections to the major drug-trafficking organizations on Mexico's West Coast, including the Sinaloa cartel, also known as the Cartel del Padfico, and the Caro Quintero organization in Jalisco.
The trial judge concluded that although a number of the price fixing arrangements alleged by the ACCC were established which may have had an effect on prices in Australia, the cartel conduct did not take place in a market in Australia in which the airlines were competing, as was required by the Act at the time.
It is one of direct confrontation, with the cartels spurred on by the increasing national security threat they represented to the Mexican state.
Citizens have challenged the dominance of a pseudo-religious drug cartel that officials themselves have been unable to uproot.
With all of the compliance enforcement methods used by antitrust agencies (imprisonment, individual and corporate fines, and leniency), the number of antitrust agencies around the world spending resources to uncover cartels, and layers of compliance programs within a given company, it may be surprising that so many large and sophisticated companies avoided detection for ten years.
Some two dozen officers in the western state of Michoacan have confessed to being in the pay of cartels and turned over two federal investigators whose abandoned, burnt-out vehicles were discovered recently.
One official said: "We are witnessing a very severe crisis because of the war between cartels.
Summary: Mexico City: The former head of a major Mexican drug cartel was shot dead by .
The government was able to show how the corrupting influence of drug cartels has extended into the United States with cartel bosses using an otherwise legitimate domestic industry to launder proceeds from drug trafficking and other crimes," Pitman added.
La Linea were one of the most notorious enforcer units wreaking terror for the Juarez cartel.
Shipping companies can legally form cartels to stabilize overseas transportation fares if their applications for such cartels are approved by authorities.